Why pay for the military?

Wouldn’t it be great if once a year the federal government sent us a form where we could check off the specific items

Wouldn’t it be great if once a year the federal government sent us a form where we could check off the specific items we would like our own personal tax dollar contributions to be allocated towards.

Don’t have children? No need to check off the box that supports the kids. Still many years away from your golden years? Don’t need to support the elderly this year. The CBC not programed into your car radio? Don’t want to throw money at that. Feeling really healthy? Might as well take the chance on not spending any money health care this time around.

When it’s put that way, clearly an absurd idea.

Earlier this week our representative in Ottawa put forward a private member’s bill that might win him some fans, but in reality it’s not a very good idea at all. NDP MP Alex Atamanenko wants to give conscientious objectors the right to prevent their tax dollars from going to the military. It’s a slippery slope.

The federal government collects and distributes mountains of taxpayer cash on a wide variety of services and programs. You would be hard pressed to find any Canadian who isn’t completely against at least one piece of the public pay pie chart.

The large majority of Canadians would agree that violence and war are bad. Very few are fans of suffering, hate and death. But greed and lust for power are inevitable, so it’s important to have a military to protect values which we hold dearest — primarily freedom.

Regardless of one’s beliefs, we are all Canadians. And though we might not like how all our tax dollars are spent, we are all in this together. That spirit helps make this country great.

Like most private member bills, Atamanenko’s attempt has very little chance of becoming law. It would be nice to see our MP spending more time on issues that will actually make his riding and this nation an even better place to live.


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